News

ICT Researchers Earn Special Effects Credits in Groundbreaking Avatar Film

December 18, 2009

Paul Debevec, ICT’s associate director for graphics research, Abhijeet Ghosh, research assistant professor, and Wan-Chun (“Alex”) Ma, postdoctoral researcher, have been recognized with film credits for their work using ICT’s Light Stage facial scanning technology in James Cameron’s latest action adventure movie Avatar. Working closely with the visual effects wizards at Weta Digital, USC ICT’s Graphics Laboratory scanned the faces of many of the film’s principal cast members using Light Stage 5, ICT’s latest geometry and appearance capture system.  This innovative technology, housed at ICT’s Marina del Rey campus, precisely captures the shape, shine, color and texture of an actor’s face down to the level of each fine pore and wrinkle.  These detailed scans were used by WETA Digital in their process of creating the film’s photorealistic digital humans and creatures, which are being lauded as a groundbreaking achievement in the evolution of digital filmmaking.

Avatar joins a growing list of visual effects movies that have used USC ICT’s Light Stage technology; others include Spider-Man 2Spider-Man 3Superman Returns, King KongHancockG.I. Joe andThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

ICT Graphics Lab

Avatar trailer

Avatar full production credits